DoctorsFarhad Hafezi, MD, PhD

Farhad Hafezi, MD, PhD

Farhad Hafezi, MD, PhD

Title: Professor of Ophthalmology - University of Geneva, Switzerland and Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology - Keck School of Medicine of USC

Department: Ophthalmology

Clinical Specialty: Cornea and External Diseases

Biography and Education


Farhad Hafezi, MD, PhD, studied medicine at the University of Fribourg and University of Bern in Switzerland. He is married, has three daughters and resides in Zug, Switzerland.
Prof. Hafezi’s clinical focus is the cornea and complication management after complicated refractive laser surgery. He was instrumental in implementing corneal cross-linking technology in ophthalmology, which is currently performed in over 125 countries.

From 2010 to 2014, Farhad Hafezi was the Chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology of the Geneva University Hospitals, Geneva, Switzerland, and Full Professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Geneva. In 2012, he was also appointed Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology at the Department of Ophthalmology, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California (USC) Los Angeles. While Prof. Hafezi remains a professor at the University of Geneva, in 2014, he founded the ELZA Institute AG in Zurich, Switzerland where he serves as the chief medical officer. All his clinical activities are conducted at the ELZA Institute.

In 2015, Prof. Hafezi transferred his research group focused on ocular cell biology at the CABMM from the University of Geneva to the University of Zurich. At the same time, Prof. Hafezi and his wife founded the Light for Sight Foundation (Zurich, Switzerland), which is an international initiative dedicated to eliminating preventable blindness among children and adolescents with keratoconus.

Prof. Hafezi has published more than 160 scientific articles. His work has been cited more than 5’000 times with a total impact factor of 448 and an h index of 36.
He is an Associate Editor of the “Journal of Refractive Surgery” and on the Editorial Board of the “International Journal of Keratoconus and Ectatic Corneal Disease”, “Current Eye Research” and the “Iranian Journal of Ophthalmology”. He frequently moderates courses at the ESCRS (European Society for Cataract and Refractive Surgery) and the AAO (American Academy of Ophthalmology). Prof. Hafezi is a member of the Advisory Board of “Global ONE”, the educational network of the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO).

Research Interests:

Farhad Hafezi’s main research interests are corneal wound healing, corneal infection, ocular biomechanics, and progressive myopia. The common link among these interests is a treatment modality that is now used in clinical ophthalmology for corneal diseases and dystrophies. This modality is called corneal cross-linking (CXL). CXL combines UV light and riboflavin (Vitamin B2) to modify collagen structure and biomechanics. The newest clinical application is using CXL to treat bacterial and fungal corneal infections (PACK-CXL).


  • MD, PhD, University of Zurich, Switzerland

Other WEB Profiles:


  • University of Zurich, Switzerland


  • Ophthalmology Residency, University of Zurich, Switzerland


  • Cornea and External Disease Fellowship, Rotterdam Eye Hospital, The Netherlands



  • PowerList 100, the most influential personalities in ophthalmology, “The Ophthalmologist”, London, 2016 – present
  • El Maghrabi International Award, MEACO (Middle Eastern African Council of Ophthalmology), Bahrein, 2016
  • Gold medal, SAMIR (Société Marocaine de Chirurgie Réfractive et d’Implantologie), Casablanca, Morocco, 2016
  • Honorary member of SHIOL, Hungary’s Society for Cataract and Refractive Surgery, 2016
  • 40th Anniversary of the USC Eye Institute Los Angeles, Distinguished Speaker, 2015
  • PowerList 100, the most influential personalities in ophthalmology, “The Ophthalmologist”, London, 2014
  • Casebeer Award, International Society of Refractive Surgery, American Academy of Ophthalmology, 2014
  • Gold Medal, Intraocular Implant and Refractive Society of India (IIRSI), 2014
  • Amber Cornea, Polish Ophthalmological Society, 2014
  • Carl Camras Translational Research Award by the ARVO Foundation, USA, 2014
  • Kok van Alphen lecture, Meeting of the Dutch Ophthalmological Society, 2013
  • INNOGAP Award, University of Geneva, most promising patent 2012
  • VentureKick Stage 1 for promoting business ideas at Swiss Universities, 2012
  • Innovation award of the Geneva University Hospitals, 2012
  • David Easty Lecture, XIVth Bowman Club Meeting, Newcastle upon Tyne, GB, 2011
  • Isaac Bekhor lecture, Doheny Eye Institute, University of Southern California Los Angeles, USA, 2011
  • Keratoconus award of the Global Keratoconus Foundation, 2009
  • Swiss Economic Award 2007, Finalist
  • Georg Friedrich Götz Prize, highest medical award of the University of Zurich, 2002
  • Poster prize of the Swiss Ophthalmological Society, 2001
  • Retinitis Pigmentosa research award from Retina Suisse and ProRetina Germany, 2000
  • Jules Francois Prize of the Belgian Ophthalmological Society, highest Belgian award for ophthalmology, 2000
  • Cover article in “Nature Medicine”, 1997
  • Alfred Vogt Prize of the Swiss Ophthalmological Society, 1997
  • Poster prize of the Swiss Ophthalmological Society, 1996
  • Poster prize of the Swiss Ophthalmological Society, 1995